Kagoule – Strange Entertainment Review

The Nottingham three piece’s second effort sees them grow in confidence and scale, with ‘Strange Entertainment’ being a confident, varied album. Every track on the album is different in pace and tone, but it still flows really well and feels like one coherent piece.

Opener and album highlight ‘Egg Hunt’ starts off with just vocals and bass before developing into a really groovy track with a great, catchy jangly riff that hasnt left my head in a few days.

‘It’s Not My Day’ is another fave off the album it being one of the heavier moments on Strange Entertainment, with very strong vocals from Lucy over a slow but punky backing, with brilliant creative drum patterns on this track.

Monsieur Automaton is another great track, and another change of pace with this being perhaps the fastest track on the album, and I love the harmonised vocals on the verses a lot here. Closer ‘Strange Was the Time’ is another growing, progressive track that shows off just how good the trio are musically.

With great production, variety and just banging songs throughout this is exactly the album Kagoule needed to make, and they pulled it off.

80%

Kagoule have some upcoming UK tour dates:

Oct 31st – Leeds – Wharf Chambers
Nov 01st – Manchester – The Eagle Inn
Nov 02nd – Liverpool – EBGB’s
Nov 03rd – Nottingham – Rescue Rooms
Nov 07th – Margate – Tom Thumb Theatre
Nov 08th – Brighton – Prince Albert
Nov 09th – Portsmouth – The Loft
Nov 10th – Southampton – Heartbreakers
Nov 11th – Bristol – Rough Trade
Nov 19th – London – Moth Club

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Car Quest Review (Nintendo Switch)

Car Quest is a clever little game. Imagine Rocket League, Super Monkey Ball and Monument Valley had a baby.

In Car Quest, you control… a car, who has to drive around Blocktaria in order to restore the world to its former glory. To do this, you must uncover several ‘artefacts’, that unlock new areas in the main hub that eventually lead to new areas, or ‘realms’, and also gradually your guide ‘Lord Blockstar’ remembers more about himself, and the world around him.

At the start, the game does feel a little bare bones, and the home world feels empty. However, the more you play, the more you explore and unlock meaning that it genuinely does feel like you’re restoring the world. The puzzles don’t vary much from ‘Find the next artefact’ but the ways you have to find them are very clever at times, and are surprisingly challenging.

Despite almost Metroid levels of backtracking, the game only feels repetitive in the beginning; as soon as the main hub opens up you can zoom around finding artefacts and pieces for the museum, and it feels very nice indeed. It runs very smoothly too, and with simple but effective graphics, it also looks great, and is a perfect fit on Switch.

Car Quest is a lovely puzzle game, and definitely worth a few hours of your time.

81%

Car Quest is out now on the Nintendo eShop for £7.69.

I was sent ‘Car Quest’ free of charge in exchange for a review.

Kiran Leonard and Let’s Eat Grandma team up for ‘Legacy of Neglect’

Coming in at around 9 minutes, this new track from Kiran is a long one, but miraculously it doesn’t drag on. This cut, featuring the amazing Let’s Eat Grandma, is from Kiran’s upcoming album ‘Western Culture’ out on the 9th November.

 

Kiran has an upcoming UK & Ireland Tour, check out the dates below:

20 Oct – Oxford, Ritual Union                                                                                                            22 Oct – Leicester, Cookie                                                                                                                  23 Oct – Cambridge, Portland Arms                                                                                                    24 Oct – Guildford, Boileroom                                                                                                          25 Oct – York, Crescent                                                                                                                      26 Oct – Huddersfield, Parish                                                                                                                27 Oct – Stockton, Georgian Theatre                                                                                                21 Nov – Galway, Roisin Dubh                                                                                                              22 Nov – Dublin, Whelans                                                                                                                  23 Nov – Limerick, Kasbah Social
24 Nov – Cork, Cyprus Avenue                                                                                                        26 Nov –Brighton,  Green Door Store
27 Nov – London, MOTH Club                                                                                                              28 Nov – Manchester, Soup Kitchen                                                                                                  29 Nov – Birmingham, Hare & Hounds                                                                                        30 Nov – Glasgow, Hug & Pint                                                                                                            01 Dec – Newcastle, Cumberland Arms                                                                                          03 Dec – Norwich, Arts Centre                                                                                                            04 Dec Bristol, Rough Trade                                                                                                            05 Dec – Cardiff Clwb Ifor Bach

Photos by Manox and Charlotte Patmore

New Release Roundup 9th October 2018

Charli XCX & Troye Sivan – 1999: An over the top, 90’s inspired pop track with a really irresistible hook, and great production. Exactly what I expected, and wanted from a collab between these two. 90%

Anderson .Paak & Kendrick Lamar – Tints: Great performances by Anderson and Kendrick on this effortlessly smooth synth-funk track, that fittingly sounds like driving round a city at night. Very nice. 93%

Jaden Smith – Goku: An unexpected banger from Jaden here. I didn’t realise he could actually rap, but this new cut from his upcoming ‘Sunset Tapes’ project is actually pretty solid! 80%

Mutual Benefit – Come To Pass: A really pleasant, breezy track with a melancholy undertone taken from Mutual Benefit’s new album, Thunder Follows the Light, which is out now. Love the vocals on this too, 85%

Roses Gabor – Stuff: ‘Stuff’ is a dark, synthy cut from Roses, and the minimalist beats and production on the track really fit well with her echoey vocals. Very vibey. 80%

Kiran Leonard – Unreflective Life:  A great new track from Kiran, giving me a kind of Mystery Jets meet Doves vibe, and i’m really here for it. Always a good sign when a 6 minute long song keeps my attention. 80%

 

Venue Talk: Doe on Brudenell Social Club, Leeds.

I spoke to the indie trio Doe about their favourite live venue, which is Leeds’ Brudenell Social Club. The band are building up to the release of their second album ‘Grow Into It’ on the 28th September. Check out their latest single ‘Labour Like I Do’ below, and read what they had to say about the social club.

“After careful consideration, Brudenell Social Club in Leeds.”

“Leeds is generally a lovely place to play with a great music scene (special s/o to also excellent Wharf Chambers), so the audience is always really mixed and responsive. The sound at Brudenell is always good, the toilets are clean (extremely important) and there’s loads of space to chill / chat / hang out so you’re not cooped up in one intense gig space.”

Have you ever played there?

“Yes we’ve played there a few times on tour and are playing there again in October with Speedy Ortiz.”

Who else have you seen there?

“Only really the other bands we’ve played with because we’re not from Leeds, but they were all GREAT.”

Brudenell Facts:

  • Upcoming shows at the Brudenell include Albert Hammond Jr, Mitski and Teleman.
  • The Social club was established December 8th, 1913
  • Kaiser Chiefs, Franz Ferdinand, The Cribs, Four Tet and The Fall have all played at the Social Club.
  • It is a community ‘non profitmaking’ venue, that holds charitable status.
  • Photography, Film and even Origami groups meet up at the Brudenell.

You  can pre-order Doe’s album here, and check out upcoming events at the Brudenell here.

My Big Mental Head Interview

I had a chat to Connie from My Big Mental head about the mental health based project, billed as a ‘safe space for musicians and fans to openly talk about their mental health’ and how important it is to her.

“I started MBMH for a number of different reasons but the main two were the fact that I was starting to feel as though my original blog, where I just wrote reviews, wasn’t doing what I wanted it to and it wasn’t helping people or inspiring people.”
I wanted to feel like I was impacting at least one person and so I started to feel like it was a waste of time. This then ties in with the second reason which was IDLES.”

“I had recently become a fan of them and their music inspired me to get back into all of my creative hobbies, when, at the time, I was feeling depressed and unmotivated. It made me want to give something back to them, along with all the other bands and musicians that have helped me in the past, all of which have suffered themselves.”

When I asked her why she specifically decided to focus on the Music industry, this is what she had to say:
“The music industry is something that I grew up learning about, due to my aunty being in a band in the 90s. I learnt about the pressures and the hardships and I heard all the horror stories. “

“My love for music and my passion for supporting bands and artists blossomed from this and I always made it my mission to ensure that these musicians are being supported and treated fairly. “

“I think that bands, artists, fans, managers, sound engineers – everyone that contributes to the music industry – need to take the leap and talk about mental health. It’s a domino effect – when one band speaks out about something that they have been through or experienced, someone that has had a similar experience will feel comfortable enough to talk, too. Everyone just needs to be supportive and non-judgmental.”
You can find out more about  My Big Mental Head here, and follow them on Twitter at @mybigmentalhead.

New Release Roundup: 10th August 2018

Twenty One Pilots – Levitate: The third track taken from Top’s upcoming ‘Trench’ album signifies the biggest shift in sound from the duo, with a fairly chill, vibey beat underneath Tyler’s rapped verses. It’s a short one too, coming in at just over 2 minutes. 70%

Ray Blk – Run Run: A catchy, thoughtful track from Ray Blk here giving an autobiographical perception of violence and crime in London. A very nicely produced beat and a good, heartfelt vocal performance. 80%

She Drew The Gun – Resister: This is the lead single from She Drew The Gun’s upcoming album ‘Revolution of Mind’ out in October, and it’s a brilliant galloping, groovy rock track. Sick. 90%

Leadley – Like I Did: Pleasantly surprised by this new Leadley track; great vocals from Bethan over a really groovy synth-pop production makes this her best track so far. 80%

Anteros – Call Your Mother: Reaally like this new one from Anteros. With an instantly infectious chorus and the best performance by the band i’ve heard so far, this is by far their best song to date and I’m very excited for what’s next. 94%

Nina Nesbitt – Loyal To Me: This has been in my head since Nina played it at Tramlines a few weeks ago and I’m glad to report it’s still a bop. Hopefully going to be a massive hit for her. 90%

Tkay Maidza ft. Duckwrth – Flexxin: An aaaabsolute banger. Amazing beat, amazing bars from both Tkay and Duckwrth. 93%

Jetta – Fool: A great funky, synth-pop track from Jetta here, with the great production on the track giving off a really rich layered sound without it being too cluttered or messy. Niiice. 80%

L.S.D. – Thunderclouds: L.S.D. is Labrinth, Sia and Diplo. Despite all this great musical power behind the track this one falls a bit flat to me, feeling uninspired and just forgettable. 40%

Maland2016 – M-Sides: A really solid debut release from upcoming Canadian electronic producer Maland2016. A groovy, varied collection of videogame-esque tracks. 80%